Historical Figures

Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

Last updated:2022-07-25

Winston Churchill

British politician, leader, writer, and Prime Minister of Great Britain in the 20th century. He was born into an aristocratic family, his father was Lord Randolph Churchill. He graduated from a military school. From 1895, he served in the cavalry, while describing the actions of British troops in newspaper articles and books. Shipped to, among others, India, Sudan and South Africa. In 1899, captured by the Boers, he organized a daring escape, which brought him considerable popularity. In 1900 he became involved in the political life of the country. Member of the House of Commons, member of several government offices, as Interior Minister and Trade Minister.

In the years 1911-1915 he was the first Lord of the Admiralty. He made a decision about the disastrous landing operation in the Dardanelles. Despite wide-ranging criticism falling on him, he quickly returned to the government, including as Minister of Military Supply and Minister of the Colony. He ended his active political career as the Chancellor of the Treasury (1924-1929). His actions, including restoring the gold standard to the pound, led to widespread strikes.

After 1929, he focused on literary activity. He was not a front-page figure, but the attacks he formulated against the growing strength of Adolf Hitler and the criticism of the conciliatory policy of the Western powers were noted. When World War II broke out, he was reappointed first Lord of the Admiralty. On the day of the German invasion of France, Winston Churchill was appointed head of the coalition government. He remained in office until the end of the war; at the same time he was constantly the Minister of Defense of Great Britain. He participated in peace conferences of the anti-Hitler coalition, the so-called The Big Three in Yalta and Potsdam. Churchill also popularized the term "Iron Curtain", which defines the dividing line of Europe into an eastern and a western bloc. The term was used by him for the first time in a telegram he sent on the morning of May 12, 1945 to the new President of the United States, Harry Truman. After the end of World War II, the British prime minister was removed from power in July 1945 due to the electoral defeat of the Conservative Party. He returned to power as prime minister in 1951-1955. In 1953 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. He died on January 24, 1965 in London of a stroke.